An explosion rocked northwest Oklahoma on Tuesday after a natural gas pipeline erupted and shot flames 200 feet in the air, making the fireball visible up to 50 miles away.
Northern Natural Gas, the company that owns the pipeline, said the fire was extinguished Wednesday morning and is trying to determine the cause of the explosion near Rosston, Okla.
“Late on October 8, 2013, Northern Natural Gas experienced a line failure on one of its pipelines located in Harper County, Oklahoma. Northern’s crews will be working around the clock to complete repairs on the line. The pipeline failure has not resulted in the interruption or curtailment of any delivery services. Because Northern’s system in this area is served by multiple lines, the repair of the line is not anticipated to result in any service interruption or curtailment,” the company said on its website. “Northern will continue its focus on safety and the reliable delivery of natural gas. If you have further questions, please contact your marketing or customer service representative. Additional information will be posted as it is available.”
There was no damage to any homes or other structures besides the pipeline in Harper County, about three hours northwest of Oklahoma City, Reuters reported.
Northern Natural Gas spokesman Mike Loeffler could not comment on the cause of Tuesday’s explosion, but he said similar blasts are usually caused by excavation near the pipeline by a company that does not ask in advance if their work may be near a pipeline.
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The explosion prompted evacuations of four homes within two miles of the blast, Harper County Emergency Management Director Conyetta Lehanayer told News9.com.